PCB says Shah’s statement can split cricketing communities

After beginning his second stint as the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) secretary, Shah said that India would like to play the continental tournament at a neutral venue.
Pakistan Cricket Board
Pakistan Cricket Board

LAHORE: The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) on Wednesday said BCCI secretary Jay Shah’s statement that India would not travel to Pakistan for the Asia Cup next year has the potential to split cricketing communities and requested the Asian Cricket Council (ACC) to convene an emergency meeting on the issue.

After beginning his second stint as the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) secretary, Shah said that India would like to play the continental tournament at a neutral venue. Shah, who made the statement after the BCCI AGM in Mumbai on Tuesday, also happens to be the ACC president.

In its first official response to Shah’s statement, the PCB said: “The overall impact of such statements have the potential to split the Asian and international cricketing communities, and can impact Pakistan’s visit to India for the ICC Cricket World Cup 2023 and future ICC Events in India in the 2024-2031 cycle.

“The PCB has to date not received any official communication or clarification from the ACC on the statement of the ACC President. As such, the PCB has now requested the Asian Cricket Council to convene an emergency meeting of its Board as soon as practically possible to discuss this important and sensitive matter.”

Pakistan has been allotted the hosting rights for the next edition of the Asia Cup, which will be held ahead of the ODI World Cup in India, in October-November. India and Pakistan play each other in only Asian and ICC events due to the political tensions between the two countries.

The PCB said that Shah’s statement was surprising and disappointing at the same time. “The PCB has noted with surprise and disappointment of yesterday’s (Tuesday’s) comments made by the ACC President Mr. Jay Shah with regards to shifting of next year’s Asia Cup to a neutral venue.

“The comments were made without any discussion or consultation with the Board of the Asian Cricket Council or the Pakistan Cricket Board (event host) and without any thoughts towards their long-term consequences and implications.

“After having presided over the ACC meeting, during which Pakistan was awarded the ACC Asia Cup with an overwhelming support and response from the ACC Board Members, Mr Shah’s statement of shifting of the ACC Asia Cup has clearly been made unilaterally.”

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